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Adam’s TAC ’14 Log: Japanese + Dutch

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19 messages over 3 pages: 1 2 3  Next >>
aokoye
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Speaks: English*, German
Studies: Dutch, Norwegian, Japanese

 
 Message 1 of 19
27 December 2013 at 10:01pm | IP Logged 
For 2014's Total Annihilation Challenge (which is my first) I will be attempting to learn
Japanese and Dutch. I'm a beginner in both languages but have taken one semester of
Japanese before (though it was years ago) and have picked up and put down studying
Japanese for off and on for years. I also have a background in German which should make
Dutch less difficult.

I am starting at an A0 with Japanese and would like to end up at B1 or A2+. I am also
starting at A0 in Dutch and would like to end up A2. I intend on spending more time on
Japanese than Dutch but Dutch will likely be the easier language because of how close it
is to both German and English. In reality the real challenge in this upcoming year's TAC
will be not dropping one or both of the languages.

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aokoye
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Speaks: English*, German
Studies: Dutch, Norwegian, Japanese

 
 Message 2 of 19
28 December 2013 at 5:45am | IP Logged 
As I said in my first post, I have studied Japanese off and on for a number of years.
Though my level has stayed about the same (as can be expected due to the time between
periods of study), I have amassed a sizable collection of textbooks including Genki 1
(1st ed), Japanese for Everyone, and Total Japanese (by Okano Kimiko et al - though
I'm missing the audio which is a real bummer).

After a bit of trial and error earlier this winter I decided on using Genki 1 and
Kanji Look and Learn
as well as the workbooks for both. Kanji Look and Learn is published by Japan Times and
can be used as a kanji supplement for Genki 1/2 or likely any other beginning Japanese
textbook. The book covers 512 individual kanji and also lists additional
useful/important vocabulary words. The workbook that goes along with it contains
exercises for all of the kanji as well as the "important" vocabulary which is
highlighted in grey in the textbook under the kanji entries After I'm finished with
Genki 1 I will likely start Genki 2. Right now I have studied Japanese for about two
weeks and I am finishing up Chapter 3 in Genki and I know the kanji and supplemental
vocabulary through chapter 3 in Kanji Look and Learn.

Right now I don't have any sort of schedule that I'm trying to stick to for my Japanese
learning which is probably a good thing right now. What I am doing, however, is
studying vocabulary and kanji daily with the use of Anki, Memrise, and Skritter. As I
have said in other threads related to 2014's TAC, Memrise works really well for my
short to medium term memory and Anki favors my medium to long term memory. As of now I
am only using Skritter for the material in the kanji book and I am using Anki and
Memrise for the material in Genki.
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kraemder
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Speaks: English*
Studies: German, Spanish, Japanese

 
 Message 3 of 19
28 December 2013 at 10:56am | IP Logged 
Yeah you'll find Dutch pretty easy coming from German. The grammar and vocabulary are pretty close. But I
look forward to reading about how you fair with Japanese. Currently my language of choice. I saw you were
using skritter. Do you find it helpful?
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aokoye
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235 posts - 453 votes 
Speaks: English*, German
Studies: Dutch, Norwegian, Japanese

 
 Message 4 of 19
28 December 2013 at 9:48pm | IP Logged 
Thanks for taking a look at my log Kraemder - I actually have you Japanese log up in another
tab as I have been meaning to read through it for a while. I have found Skritter to be very
useful for learning individual kanji as well as vocab that uses kanji. I have used the
original flash based browser version and the iPad app (both with my finger and with a stylus)
fairly extensively and have found both really helpful. There is also an open alpha HTML5
verson that can be used on Android devices and works fairly well.

Part of the reason I think it works well for me is that I tend to be an experiential learner
so the fact that I am prompted to write the kanji is very useful. The kanji are also hidden
from view by default when you're asked to write them which is a plus. I haven't found there
to be much of a difference if I write the kanji using a stylus or using the touchpad on my
laptop.

You are also tested on the definition and the pronunciation of the kanji/vocabulary at any
given time you can choose to isolate which skill you want to work on. You can also choose to
never work on any given skill for an individual word.

Skritter uses an SRS algorithm to determine when you will review words. You can also go into
your settings and choose what percentage of accuracy you want to strive for which plays a
role in what you will be tested on and when. Unlike Anki it doesn't stoo you when you've
reviewed X number of words and seen Y number of new words. That said I find it allows me
greater flexibility in what I want to learn/review. Additionally you can choose to stop
adding words from any of the lists of words (decks in Anki terms) you are studying.

It isn't free but I think it is definitely worth $9.99 a month. In the 12 days I've beenusing
it I've learned 62 individual kanji writings, definitions, and readings and an additional 72
words (I think their definition of "learned" has to do with your accuracy).
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Hekje
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Speaks: English*, Dutch
Studies: French, Indonesian

 
 Message 5 of 19
31 December 2013 at 8:42pm | IP Logged 
Hi aokoye, welcome to Team Dutch! It looks like you're quite an experienced learner already, which is great. Just
curious - why are you interested in studying Dutch? :-)
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aokoye
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235 posts - 453 votes 
Speaks: English*, German
Studies: Dutch, Norwegian, Japanese

 
 Message 6 of 19
31 December 2013 at 10:54pm | IP Logged 
Hi Hekje and thank you for the welcome to Team Dutch! I've actually been interested in learning Dutch for a
while now. I want to learn it because I think it looks (reading) and sounds really interesting which is likely due
to my background in German. The similarities that the language has to both German and English are what
draw me to it.

I'm likely going to start by using the 1999 edition of Colloquial Dutch or the 2003 edition of Teach Yourself
Dutch. I'm leaning towards Colloquial Dutch because there's more reading material (that isn't just dialogs). My
major challenge with German is reading so it's really important to me that I start reading texts as soon as
possiblea.

Do you have any suggestions as far as dutch resources or textbooks that were helpful for you?
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geoffw
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Speaks: English*, German, Yiddish
Studies: Modern Hebrew, French, Dutch, Italian, Russian

 
 Message 7 of 19
31 December 2013 at 11:24pm | IP Logged 
I also started learning Dutch after already knowing German. All I did was basically skim through "Dutch in 3
Months" (finishing in about a week) and then I started reading Harry Potter. I used Google Translate to help
understand things for a few days, but very soon I was just reading without any help, because almost everything was
cognate to English and/or German, and I knew the story well enough that it didn't matter if I missed things.
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aokoye
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Joined 3770 days ago

235 posts - 453 votes 
Speaks: English*, German
Studies: Dutch, Norwegian, Japanese

 
 Message 8 of 19
01 January 2014 at 12:05am | IP Logged 
Geoffw that sounds like a great plan and I actually have Dutch in 3 Months on my bookshelf (I bought it years
ago when I thought I was going to study abroad in Amsterdam). I'm also glad to hear that you had an easy
time with Dutch. Seeing as the shared cognates are part of why I want to learn it (and part of why it's
interesting to me linguistically) I think I'll have a fun and easy time with Dutch.

Powell's bookstore in Portland has a fair amount of books written in Dutch in their Dutch section and there is
also a Dutch store in Porltand that is very close to my favorite Asian grocery store (which also houses a
Japanese bookstore). I think they mainly sell groceries but I haven't stopped by there to check it out yet.

I think that my plan of attack with Dutch will probably be to read through Dutch in 3 Months and/or Colloquial
Dutch and then try reading simple books and articles in Dutch. I also want to find a speaking partner at some
point.


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